It's funny about daily life in Cuenca. Most of the time, we hear the roar of the Rio Tomebamba from our bedroom window, which is a wonderful sound. But, we typically are awakened each morning promptly at 7:30am by the loud speaker at the school across the river. The very first night that we stayed in our apartment, the next morning we woke up to very loud talking. I said, "What IS that?" That is when we discovered that we have a school right across the river where they make morning annoucements to the children out in the courtyard. They are also made to do morning calisthenics , "uno, dos, tres, cuatro, cinco, seis, siete, ocho...ARRIBA.." over and over. It makes me want to jump out of bed and start doing my own calistenics. Then, he makes morning annoucements and since my knowledge of Spanish is negligible, I really have no idea what he is saying. But he always says it with gusto. Well, last week, his megaphone (although it sounds like a bull horn) was shorting out and making some horrible sounds. So this week, he started out Monday morning with a brand new megaphone which was even louder and clearer than ever. I didn't think it was possible that he could get any louder. I don't know how he is not damaging the eardrums of his young students. The only good thing is that he is usually finished within 20 minutes. But by that time,we are WIDE awake. That is on Monday through Friday.
Well, on Saturday and Sunday mornings, we get a different wake-up call. We are also located next to the Coliseo (by Unidas Nacional and 12th de Abril) where the tennis courts are. Well, for the last two months, at around 8:15am on Saturday and Sunday mornings, an outdoor dance class is held in the parking lot on the side of our building. So, the heavy disco dance beat starts around 8:15am to let people know that the class is getting ready to start promptly at 8:30am. That is when the instructor starts to yell into his head microphone the dance movements that the students are supposed to follow. These classes are also held between 8:15pm-9:30pm on Tuesday and Thursday evenings (for those who are interested). The music is SO loud that we can hardly hear the television in our apartment during that time. I have even joined in during a couple of classes following the movements from our bedroom window. It is like I am right out there.
It's funny how some expats talk about the noises of the roosters crowing, the car alarms, and the fireworks. We don't really hearing any roosters crowing, but you can't get away from the car alarms and the fireworks in Cuenca. (They don't really bother us so much). It makes you wonder how the Cuencan people don't complain about the early morning annoucements and the early weekend morning dance class. I guess they are up going to work at 7:30am during the week and maybe 8:15am is not so early for them on the weekends. One day I will understand enough Spanish and will understand what is being said in the school announcements. In the meantime, if those 2 things are the only things that we have to complain about here, then we are living the life in Ecuador!!